I don't have any "$5000. + microphones"; I do have some nice mics that I got pretty cheap. As MSH pointed out, "mic placement is often more important than mic selection." For example, MXL makes the Genesis, the V69, the 960, and the V67, and all of them have a "Neumann-esque" sound to them.; I can do a decent vocal with any of them. Studio Projects makes the T3 and that's damn similar sounding to the AKG C12.That is sound advice MSH ! and I do have a hand full of go to mics for every - vocal/guitar/drums etc. - application and the usual suspects as back ups if they aren't up to par.
I'm interested in what I have as good microphones being turned into boutique microphones and not having to purchase a $5000. + microphone to get those results and was hoping that when Harvey logged back into HR he would be able to give some insight and answers to this question.
The MXL 960 and the V67 are downright cheap in price, and can deliver great vocals - for the right singer, in the right position.
The trick to all this stuff is to learn the characteristics of your equipment; learn what it does with different positions and settings. That was the main purpose of the "mic thread"; to help people visualize what the mic does when you move it around.
Our studio does not own ANY modded mics. They're all stock, straight from the factory, eBay, garage sales, Craig's List, forum classifieds, or dealers.